The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown our worlds upside down, and the music industry has particularly felt the turbulence. After a year of no live music, the glimmering prospect on the horizon of festivals returning this summer promises one to remember. From rock to hip-hop, here are the anthems to this summer’s highly anticipated festival season.
Catfish and the Bottlemen, Outside
Talking about UK festivals without mentioning Catfish and the Bottlemen would be impossible. They are an electric crowd favorite who worked up to the top of festival bills in the UK. You can catch Catfish and the Bottlemen headlining Neighbourhood Weekender and Reading and Leeds Festival this summer, and believe me; they are not one to miss. I once lost half of my belongings jumping around to their set at a festival – no regrets.
Royal Blood, Typhoons
If ever we needed proof that rock and roll wasn’t dead, Royal Blood is it. This duo packs a punch and is paving the way for British rock into mainstream music. Headlining this year’s Truck Festival, Tramlines Festival, Victorious Festival and playing at Mad Cool Festival, this summer is going to rock royally.
Foals, My Number
Another summer staple is Oxford rock band Foals, who are set to headline Boardmasters Festival and All Point’s East Festival this year and play at Mad Cool Festival, Super Bock Super Rock Festival, and Eurockéenes de Belfort. As soon as those opening beats bounce in, it is physically impossible to restrain from dancing.
The Big Moon, Your Light
With tracks like Your Light, Barcelona and It’s Easy Then The Big Moon are undoubtedly the perfect soundtrack to those hazy summer days that seemingly never end. These ladies are no strangers to prominent festival stages, playing the likes of Glastonbury Festival in 2019, and are due to play at Reading and Leeds Festival, Boardmasters Festival, Y Not Festival, Tramlines Festival and Truck Festival this summer.
The Magic Gang, Think
The Magic Gang certainly have some tricks up their sleeve when it comes to getting a party started. A raucous blend of alternative, indie and jazz, they make this year’s Neighbourhood Weekender, Reading and Leeds Festival, Boardmasters Festival and TRNSMT Festival look pretty magical.
Loyle Carner, Yesterday
Rap, but make it relaxing. Hip-hop, but make it jazzy — tick, and tick. Loyle Carner’s albums Yesterday’s Gone and Not Waving, but Drowning are mellow masterpieces with the grit and honesty to make them simultaneously meaningful. His stage presence is breathtaking, and he will undoubtedly captivate everyone at this year’s All Point’s East and Boardmasters Festival.
Celeste, Stop This Flame
Utterly radiating talent, Celeste is not easy to ignore. I get goosebumps at the mere thought of hearing her hauntingly beautiful voice in person, and you’ll be able to this summer at All Point’s East Festival and Parklife Festival.
Fickle Friends, IRL
With a live stage set-up of palm trees, what’s not to love? Fickle Friends is the indie-pop powerhouse that every festival needs and is set to appear this summer at Truck Festival, 110 Above Festival and Tramlines Festival. Spoiler alert – there will be dancing.
Jade Bird, Uh Huh
Some songs are so good that singing along isn’t enough; you have to shout along. Uh Huh is a prime example. With a knack for storytelling and combining indie, folk and rock, at just 23, Jade Bird is a prominent name on the bills of Neighbourhood Weekender, Boardmasters Festival, All Points East Festival and Tramlines Festival this summer.
Circa Waves, T-Shirt Weather
Possibly the best summer anthem ever written has to come from Circa Waves with T-Shirt Weather. With lyrics like, ‘I remember some days / We were singing our lungs out / In the backseat together / And the seatbelts were burning our fingers,’ they evoke nostalgia for those sunny, carefree days. No matter the weather, Circa Waves bring sunshine. Catch them at Truck Festival, Y Not Festival and Neighbourhood Weekender for some guaranteed good vibes.